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China’s energy-related emissions resumed growth in 2017 on coal resurgence -analysts
After two years of declines, China’s energy-related greenhouse gas emissions likely resumed their upward trajectory in 2017, rising by between 2.2% and 4.1% thanks to a jump in energy demand, according to analyst estimates.
Australia to bloat emissions further after latest CO2 baseline rulings
Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator has set emissions baselines for 44 new facilities under the Safeguard Mechanism, allowing them to increase their annual CO2 output by at least 6.3 million tonnes annually.
US funders launch $52m initiative to cut Chinese HFCs
Non-profit Energy Foundation China is heading up a public-private initiative that on Thursday launched a $52-million effort to help the Chinese air conditioning industry reduce its hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) use, a move they said could slash over 52 billion tonnes of CO2e by 2050.
China backs forest carbon projects as poverty alleviation tool
Forest carbon projects would create job opportunities in less-developed regions and could play a part in achieving China’s twin targets of eradicating poverty and building an ecological civilization, according to a new government plan.
ICF to manage second phase of EU-China emissions trading programme
The European Commission has picked consultants ICF to head up the €10-million second phase of its programme to help China build its national emissions trading scheme.
Regulators shed light on proposed RGGI-Virginia linkage
Regulators from Virginia and RGGI’s nine member states held a webinar on Friday afternoon to discuss and collect feedback on their proposed carbon market linkage, shedding more light on exactly how it would operate.
EU Market: EUAs ease further from 6-yr high but still notch 4% weekly gain
EU carbon prices weakened on Friday to briefly slip below €9, but still notched a 4% weekly rise from a rally that culminated in EUAs reaching their highest for six years.
CN Markets: Pilot market data for week ending Jan. 26, 2018
Below is a table of the closing prices, ranges and volumes for China’s regional pilot carbon markets this week. All prices are in RMB, and volumes in tonnes of CO2e. Data sourced from local exchanges.
BITE-SIZED UPDATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
CORSIA calling – UN aviation body ICAO is hosting at its Montreal headquarters a seminar on how it aims for its CORSIA offsetting scheme and carbon markets are helping aviation become more sustainable. Register here for the Feb. 7 – 9 event
Paper tiger – Michigan Congressman Fred Upton, the former chairman of the powerful Energy and Commerce Committee, is joining the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus. According to Axios, he is by far the most prominent and high-profile GOP lawmaker with jurisdiction over energy policy to join the two-year old House group. His membership will bring the group’s total to 68 lawmakers, divided evenly between both parties. But observers call the group a ‘paper tiger’ because it remains unclear what purpose it serves, if any. It has not accomplished anything legislatively to date, while many of its Republican members oppose Obama-era climate regulations and voted for last year’s tax bill that opened the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo, the group’s co-chairman, recently told Yale Environment 360 that he wants the group to begin offering policy proposals in this Congress or the next one.
The great escape – Alberta oil and gas companies are wasting so much natural gas each year that Albertans are losing out on up to C$21 million a year in provincial natural gas royalties, according to advocacy group Progress Alberta. Oil and gas companies let an estimated C$253 million worth of natural gas escape through undetected leaks and the practice of venting annually. In addition to the lost royalties, the potent GHG is leaked into the atmosphere without paying the province’s C$30/tonne carbon levy, which results in a further loss of up to $1.4 billion in revenue, according to a new analysis by the Pembina Institute. When that carbon price increases to $50/tonne, as Premier Rachel Notley has indicated it will, those lost revenues rocket to $2.25 billion. Alberta’s oil and sector emitted an estimated 31.4 million tonnes of methane in 2014, though a recent study by Carleton University suggested the province is underestimating that pollution by 25-50%. The Canadian federal government has committed to reducing methane emissions by 45% below 2012 levels by 2025, though it proposed delaying full implementation of new rules by three years to 2023, instead of 2020. (DeSmog Canada)
Great achievement – The Trump administration has installed signs inside the EPA headquarters celebrating “environmental achievements” by the agency in Trump’s first year in office, the Hill reports. The “Year of Great Environmental Achievements” poster highlights five actions by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, mostly in rolling back Obama-era policies including the Clean Power Plan and providing “confidence for American families” and “certainty” for the economy.
Pay up – Four out of five countries are late in making their contributions to the UN climate body’s operating budget. The US is actively refusing to fund its share while others are supportive in principle but have been slow to pay up. China, Brazil, France and Germany are among those missing an agreed timeline for payments, according to a UNFCCC statement that showed 31 countries, including the UK and Canada, had paid on time. (Climate Home)
And finally… Basement boondoggle – Private property below ground in New York and Mumbai may not be insurable in the next decade if climate change advances, the head of one of Europe’s largest insurers said. “If you go much further to 2020, 2030, we can clearly say that at a scenario between 3 and 4 degrees, it’s not insurable anymore,” Thomas Buberl, chief executive officer of AXA SA, said on a panel at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. “Your basement shop in New York, your basement shop in Mumbai will at this point not be insurable anymore.” (Bloomberg)
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